Judge Learned Hand on Paying Taxes

Judge Learned Hand, (b. January 27, 1872, d. August 18, 1961) was a Federal District Court Judge in the Southern District of New York and later served on the Federal Appeals Court for the Second Circuit. One of his most famous quotes and one with which most good tax attorneys and CPA’s are familiar, is this one.

“Anyone may arrange his affairs so that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which best pays the treasury. There is not even a patriotic duty to increase one’s taxes. Over and over again the Courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everyone does it, rich and poor alike and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands.” –Judge Learned Hand

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